Now more than ever, college graduates are finding that breaking into the job market is tough. Students are seeking out as many job opportunities as available. But with the current state of the economy, employers are able to pick and choose from the hundreds of applications with inexperienced graduates receiving the short end of the stick.
Though new grads have the knowledge, most students lack the experience that employers want. It can feel like a Catch-22 because it is hard to find a job without experience and just as difficult to gain experience without a job.
But students who make the most of their time in school will offer advantages in the work force other graduates do not have. Here are some great ways to start building your resume while still in school.
Students are told time and time again to participate in internships, but students rarely heed this advice. Classes, jobs, and extracurricular commitments often leave students with little time to find and work a good internship. However, the experience gained in an internship is really critical to finding employment in the field they want after graduation.
Searching for the right internship can seem like an overwhelming process at first. But utilizing the available resources provided by your college is the perfect place to begin. Schools like South University online have professors, staff, and other resources to help students find and connect with pertinent internships that will allow them to develop their interests and even earn college credits.
Some employers believe that hiring recent grads proves too risky. They have found that inexperienced students can hurt their offices because although the graduates hold degrees, most lack a professional work ethic and good attitude. Because of this, many employers are hesitant to hire or even interview someone without any proven work experience.
Participating in an internship for even one semester will help assure future employers that you can conduct business in a professional setting with integrity and skill. And there is always the potential that the good rapport you establish in your internship can turn that temporary position into a full-time job at the same company post graduation.
Most colleges offer a resource such as career services which lists different career opportunities for graduating students. Generally these listings come from local companies who have contacted colleges with the sole purpose of hiring entry-level graduates. The various available jobs extend from full-time open positions to marketing opportunities to research positions making career services a solid resource for graduating students.
During the last semesters at school, networking with various companies can give you an incredible advantage. Students will show initiative by contacting employers and letting them know they will be graduating soon, are extremely interested in the company, and intend to apply for a position. And in researching and contacting prospective companies ahead of time, you will help to build your personal network of connections so that there is a web of contacts to catch you when school eventually ends.
Volunteering and On Campus Jobs
Volunteering at a company, school, or office is generally a smaller time commitment but can hold equal clout on a resume. This sort of work can provide relevant experience while demonstrating that you care about the community. And because you are working for free, most places will be willing to work around student schedules and allow for flexibility.
Another way to gain work history but actually get paid comes from seeking out part time jobs that are relevant to you career path. For example, education majors who dream of becoming teachers can start building a resume now with a side job tutoring.
Because of the difficult job market, students will find it beneficial to put their time in college to good use by seeking out internships, relevant jobs, and using school and professiorial resources to prepare them for a future career.
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